A few weeks ago, we decided to spend a day at the beach to say farewell to summer. After a little research and asking around we decided to go to Terrapin Nature Park located on Kent Island in the Chesapeake Bay. It was a really perfect spot for us! Not too crowded, gentle waves and a beautiful view.
Terrapin Nature Park is located near both Baltimore and Washington, D.C. There’s a bridge that will take you across the Bay to Kent Island. The toll is $4 (cash only) and you only pay one way.
The island had a few convenient gas stations to get drinks, snacks or use the restroom. There’s only a Port-O-Potty– located near the parking lot and the beach– at Terrapin Park. So prepare for that! The park has a small, shady parking lot. There are no fees. It’s a bit of a hike to the beach, so don’t plan to go back and forth to your car.
We got a little confused when trying to find the path to the beach. They could do with a bit more signage. Basically you go down the paved path from the parking lot and veer off to a dirt path toward the left. The trail is forest-like and you don’t feel like it’s going to the beach, but you nose soon leads the way. There’s a nice marsh ecosystem right before you reach the beach. We were serenaded by cicadas and crickets as we passed through. It was a perfect way to contrast coastal ecosystems for my son and we spent some time observing the birds and plant life.
The path eventually leads to the beach. It’s a small strip of sand, but not crowded and mostly just families out enjoying the day. We also found it to be very clean and enjoyable. Make sure you bring your umbrellas and whatever else you need. There’s no rental service and no lifeguards either.
What I found really great about this spot was how calm the water was. Neither of my kids have much experience on an oceanside beach and I think the larger waves would have scared them. My little girl has only been to a beach once, but I don’t think she remembers it. She was pretty skittish about getting in the water!
She eventually warmed up and got down in the surf and sand. The shoreline is not too deep. My husband was able to wade out to about waist deep with the kids. He was holding her of course but my son walked on his own. In choppier waters he would have been knocked over so this was a nice introduction to the coast.
They had a wonderful time. My son and I talked about the differences between beaches- how some have shells and others have rocks, differences in the waves, prevalence of animal life. We’d actually been doing a homeschool unit study on the beach. I’ll write a separate post about that later. I’m a bit behind on blogging. We’ve been on the go so much I just haven’t had the time or energy, but hopefully I’ll play catch up now.
It was an awesome day on the beach. I’m hoping next summer we can explore other beaches in the area. I’ve heard the Delaware beaches are nice!
Have you said goodbye to summer yet?